• Reading makes a difference in student outcomes, and shared reading experiences bond families, communities, and schools. Thanks to a donation from Chippenham Hospital, students and teachers at Lucille Brown Middle School will share in a collective reading experience this year.

    Chippenham Hospital, a long-time medical provider in the Richmond area and part of the HCA family, generously donated $7,000 for this program. Communities in Schools Richmond facilitated the receipt and distribution of funds to provide one copy of “Nine, Ten: A September 11th Story,” by Nora Raleigh Baskin, to all Lucille Brown Middle School students, teachers, and administrators. The unified experience will create opportunities for cross-curricular applications of the book’s concepts and allow students and teachers to explore its themes in greater depth this year and in the future.

    “The school community at Lucille Brown Middle School is truly appreciative of our partnership with CJW Hospital,” said Principal Dr. Stacy Gaines. “Their generous donation for the purchase of our school-wide novel is a mammoth testament to the power of community engagement and support!”

    The book follows four middle school students from different parts of the country whose lives and stories intersect in the days before September 11, 2001. In addition to struggling with their own coming of age challenges, the story’s diverse protagonists each experience the national tragedy in different ways.

    “As a learning community, we revere literacy development, and our commitment to making reading a fundamental aspect in the lives of all of our students in unwavering,” Gaines said. “As we delve into this initiative, it is with the expectation that we will expand the horizons of our entire school family, one page at a time.”

    Carolyn Myers, Vice-President of Operations at Chippenham Hospital, and Danielle Timmons, HCA’s Director of Marketing, visited the school on Monday, January 22, to deliver the books and talk to students. Elizabeth Layne, Brown Middle’s Library, told students that she is in the process of scheduling a visit to the school by the author, and added that English classes will participate in “Novel Tuesday” activities.

    Chippenham Hospital, recently recognized by U.S. News and World Report as a national leader in congestive heart failure, is located on Jahnke Rd., just minutes from Lucille Brown Middle School.


    “It’s an honor to be able to give back to our communities and neighboring organizations outside of our hospitals,” said Greg Lowe, Chief Executive Officer of Chippenham & Johnston-Willis Hospitals. “We’re thankful for our partners at Lucille Brown Middle School and hope this gift will allow them to start the school year on a positive note and continue to help their students succeed academically.”


    Communities in Schools Richmond is facilitating the receipt and distribution of funds. The non-profit organization is a drop-out prevention program operating in 40 Richmond City and Henrico County schools, working to implement early interventions and provide students with enrichment opportunities such as mentoring programs, school-wide transition programs and small groups that help develop the school climate and to promote academic, behavioral and social development for students.


    “Here at Lucille Brown we are so fortunate to have amazing partners such as Chippenham Hospital who believe in the work that we do and who do not hesitate to offer their resources and time to our students,” said Van-Neisha Johnson, the CIS Coordinator at Lucille Brown Middle School. “We are excited about this year's book read that will be funded by Chippenham and we look forward to continuing to nurture our relationship with that organization. "